This is Part 6 of the special series “Discover the Work You Were Born to Do“, by author Nick Williams.

By the end of this article, you will have explored:

  • The new entrepreneurial spirit
  • Some of the common objections to becoming an entrepreneur
  • The six passions behind the new entrepreneurial spirit

A new entrepreneurial spirit emerges via the work we were born to do. As we have seen, it is based on creative inspiration rather than purely on economic gain. I call working in this way being ‘an inspired entrepreneur’.

However, many people’s hearts sink when they think about turning something they love into a business. There are two major reasons for this:

Being an entrepreneur or business owner has connotations of being tough, greedy, competitive, self-serving and perhaps even exploitative: just as the word ‘work’ is negatively emotionally laden for many people, so is the word ‘business’. But it needn’t be! Both words can be redeemed when we realise that a successful business can be based on serving people without losing our integrity in the process.

‘Going commercial’ does not mean that you are suddenly transformed into an aggressive salesperson who looks at everyone with pound (or dollar or euro) signs in their eyes. However, being an inspired entrepreneur does mean being willing to ask for (and accepting) money for your work and proactively seeking financial reward. After all – if your business struggles to accept money – how can it grow to serve the world in a greater way?

Another big myth is that, by turning professional, we’ll somehow lose our love for the work as it will be reduced to a sterile business activity. We may think that amateurs ‘do it for love’ whereas professionals ‘do it for money’.

I want to turn this around and suggest that if we stay amateurs at something we love, then we actually don’t love that activity enough! As professionals we may accept money for what we do, but we also do it for the love of it. We have to love what we do, otherwise why would we want to dedicate so much of our life, time and energy to it?

We look out into the world and think, ‘But there is so much competition. What’s special about me? How am I ever going to beat the competition to find my customers? I don’t have enough to offer!’

There are various issues to understand here. Firstly, each one of us is unique and whatever we do will be unique – so customers may choose you simply because they like the unique way you approach the work.

Secondly, far from there being a shortage of opportunity, the world is overflowing with it. There are so many unmet human needs, things being done badly, and dull and uninspiring businesses out there. If we do something in a competent and inspired way, we are very likely to succeed.

And finally, the economy is always growing and people are always spending more money. So we don’t necessarily have to compete – we just need to turn up, show people what we do and – as people see what we do – they will start wanting it!

The main difference between an ordinary entrepreneur and an inspired entrepreneur is whether our focus is mainly on seeking money or serving our own heart.

The two are by no means exclusive, but the key question is which factor we are primarily motivated by. The prevailing questions for most ordinary entrepreneurs are: ‘What is hot?’ ‘Where can I make money?’ ‘What is the market hungry for?’ ‘Where is the demand?’ In contrast, the prevailing questions that guide the inspired entrepreneur are: ‘What does my heart want to do?’ ‘What am I inspired to do?’ ‘How can I help my fellow human beings?’

Inspired entrepreneurs are the motivating, central cause in their working lives – rather than being at the mercy of outside forces and dictated to by markets.

I want to help you discover what’s in your heart and then successfully take it to the marketplace – so that many people can experience the benefit of it and so you can create a successful business of your own.

You can be a force in the marketplace without selling out. When you do what you love – the money will follow – but you will need to learn how to make the money follow rather than just hoping that it will. And I can teach you that.

The Six Passions Behind the New Entrepreneurial Spirit

Whilst the new entrepreneurial spirit is not primarily about making money, many inspired entrepreneurs are very successful financially – and you can learn to ‘put out the welcome mat for money’ in the same way.

The new spirit sees business simply as a vehicle, not as an end in itself. It is a great canvas onto which to express our soul, find freedom, be creative, make a contribution and grow and evolve ourselves.

The new entrepreneurial spirit does not necessarily lead to our wanting to create a huge business; most likely it will manifest itself as a desire to be a solo professional, working in association with others – with a handful of employees at most – and often working from home.

It’s based on six principal passions:

A passion for the work you were born to do. Being an inspired entrepreneur is about doing what we love and work we’re passionate about, with a sense of purpose… it’s about serving our clients and generating the income we need and want – whilst feeling that we are doing what we came here to do. Inspired entrepreneurs get out of bed fastest and go to work happiest; they hit the ground running because they express themselves through their work and find intrinsic fulfilment in doing it.

A passion that creates something that didn’t exist before. Being an entrepreneur is not a job title, but a state of mind. The inspired entrepreneur sees business as an inherently creative act. The Latin root of the word ‘create’ is creare, meaning ‘to bring into being’; to bring a business into being means imagining it first, dreaming it into existence.
Even though the world can seem an unsafe place for our dreams, we can all find the courage and skills within ourselves to bring our dreams into existence. Inspired entrepreneurs see the creative potential and power in ideas; they love creating things and they love doing things creatively. And once they have created something, they are always wondering what is next.

A passion for freedom, individuality and interdependence. This expresses itself as a need to ‘do your own thing’ and as a tendency to take responsibility for yourself and for your business. An inspired entrepreneur has little interest in blaming her mother, the economy, or the Government, realising instead that she can only truly change herself.
The inspired entrepreneur is in charge of his own destiny, and that makes him giddy with excitement. With this spirit, we want to help change the world, not wait for the world to change. In doing so we become more fully alive, and that vitality is transmitted energetically to our customers, attracting customers who are also fully alive.

A passion for personal growth and fulfilment of your potential. As humans our nature is to keep growing, developing and unfolding into our own greatest good – so there is nothing sadder or more tragic than to have our potential go untapped. There is a greatness of spirit in everyone, and our fulfilment will come from finding and expressing that potential through our work. Our playing small does not serve the world.

Our work and business can stretch us and help us discover our creative talents and solve problems; it can enable us to satisfy continually our curiosity about all that we can become. Through it, we can discover and activate new aspects of ourselves, constantly evolving and learning. And as we grow, so the opportunities open to us increase as well. We will find ourselves presented with more exciting projects, bigger challenges and new things to master. In this way, we don’t stay as acorns, but grow into oak trees. The business we end up with may be very different from the one we start; it will always be evolving and changing as we learn, grow and understand more.

A passion for building a lifestyle, not just a business. When we are doing the work we were born to do, the delineation between work, play and life begins to blur for us. When our work is an expression of our real Self, we won’t want to get away from it, although we may well occasionally need to refresh and renew ourselves. Even when we are doing what we love, we will still want and need fun, family, friends, balance, renewal, rest and adventure, and time just to ‘be’ rather than ‘do’. But we will nevertheless become a whole person in the process, rather than someone who lives their life in compartments.

A passion for service and contribution. Service and contribution are what makes your life fulfilling, and making a difference in the world is the highest function of your business. Your own inspired business can be a great way for you to share your particular gifts and talents with people, and make your unique contribution to life, and make your difference in the world.

It can be a channel for your generosity of spirit. A passion for helping others will lead you to richer life financially, emotionally and spiritually. You can have what you want in life when you help enough other people get what they want. And one of the greatest ways of contributing is you doing what you love and working from the highest energy place within you.

If people around you, or you yourself, doubt your sanity for wanting to give up your career or secure job in order to pursue the work you were born to do, then consider the points above. Remember the reasons why you are setting out on this path and the many rewards along the way!

About the Author

Through his books, and live talks, workshops, personal coaching and on-line learning programmes, Nick Williams has inspired tens of thousands of people to discover the work they were born to do.